The Economist: El Salvador’s Óscar Romero Canonized

After 40 years, the Vatican canonized El Salvador’s Archbishop Óscar Arnulfo Romero as a saint, and the Economist describes this as a “controversial” choice: “Often seen as ideologically left wing, he was above all a martyr for his faith and his church.” In the 1970s, El Salvador’s long-ruling coffee oligarchy and army were confronted by left-wing trade unions and peasant groups, with aid from priests – the epitome of Latin America’s “liberation theology” that took aim at the “institutionalized violence” of capitalism and poverty. As the left took up arms in the face of state repression, the church became target of counterrevolutionary violence, with the murder of the archbishop and priests along with 60,000 other people by the US-backed army and ruling junta. Romero’s martyrdom helped give way to a chaotic civil war in El Salvador. Liberation theology did not resolve Latin America’s many political and economic problems, yet left “lasting achievements” as a primary wellspring for the region’s human-rights. Grassroots leaders trained by the movement continue to fight for social justice and equality today. –YaleGlobal

The Economist: El Salvador’s Óscar Romero Canonized

Óscar Romero of El Salvador and liberation theology that spread through Latin America continue to hold relevance in the modern political context
Wednesday, October 31, 2018

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Copyright The Economist Newspaper Limited 2018

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